Smoothie market capitalizes on trends, reaps $2 billion in sales

by Staff
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CHICAGO — Smoothie makers raked in $2 billion in sales from made-to-order and packaged smoothies last year as the markets for on-the-go dining and health-conscious products continued to grow.

The 80% jump over the last five years largely is attributable to consumers’ growing interest in quick, portable and healthy meal alternatives.

"Consumers are attracted to smoothies because they are seen as a healthier option to most sweets and on-the-go meals," said David Lockwood, director of Mintel Reports. "Now that the smoothie market is a proven success, companies are being pushed to the next level — extreme differentiation.

"Similar to the coffee market, smoothie companies need to continue developing innovative flavors and additives to keep consumers engaged in the market, but also should consider expanding the menu as some chains have done with sandwiches or coffee."

The smoothie industry continues to push itself in new directions by utilizing emerging flavors, such as acai and green tea, offering nutrient boosts and by capitalizing on food trends such as all-natural and low-calorie options.

"The flavor combinations and possibilities are endless with the smoothie market," Mr. Lockwood said. "With functional foods and beverages having a strong marketplace advantage, smoothies are in position to dominate the healthy beverages category. Smoothies are seen as a pleasant health treat, and this will continue to take the category far."

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